A Chat with Burwood Group’s Healthcare Advisory Team: HIT Hot Topics for HIMSS17 and Beyond


From patient experience to staff engagement, there is no shortage of outcomes that can be impacted improved technology. So often, however, healthcare providers implement IT solutions that fall flat at the point of care. It's no wonder IT teams and clinicians grow frustrated with the lack of adoption and investment realization.

Where do the breakdowns in communication occur and how do we overcome them?

Burwood Group's healthcare team has been guiding health systems across the country with strategies that address these very issues. We are excited to participate once again in the HIMSS Annual Conference & Exhibition and look forward diving deep into many of these themes with our partners and peers. This year, our healthcare leaders share the HIT topics that are on their minds as we prepare for another great year at HIMSS:

Dr. Al Villarin, FACEP, CMIO: I believe 2017 is the year that IoT makes the shift from being a buzzword to an industry paradigm. IoT, which is now a staple in our daily lives in form of home automation and wearables, has real implications in the care environment with its ability to improve patient retention, reduce readmission rates, and dramatically enhance the patient experience. No healthcare IoT discussion is complete without covering tactics for device securityinteroperability, governance, and training/adoption, and no doubt there are several HIMSS sessions that cover these issues.

"IoT as-a-Service" in particular, is poised to transform traditional care delivery model and I'm looking forward to conversations about this at HIMSS. There are many considerations and challenges to be addressed from data analytics, storage, and maintenance, to clinician-vendor collaboration, but the health systems that succeed are those with strategic roadmaps for technology investments that align with care delivery goals and impact patient lives across the entire continuum of care.

Kathleen Harmon, MS, RN, CENP, Chief Nurse Executive: The future of clinical communication on the minds of many healthcare leaders today and it's a topic I foresee emerging this year at HIMSS. Serious clinical and legal risks are arising from miscommunication, alarm fatigue, and interruptions in our fast-paced clinical settings, which is why improving clinical communication is a priority for so many health systems that Burwood works with. This lack of integration of smartphones and tablets with clinical workflows and EMR has created a fragmented care environment.

Some healthcare organizations are now realizing that leveraging smartphones as enterprise-supported devices actually empowers caregivers and patients, boosts efficiency, and improves outcomes. I'm interested in how this year's HIMSS presenters will address the need for designing appropriate communication architectures that align technology with best practice workflow. Patients, providers, and payers all stand to gain from a unified mobile clinical communication strategy.

Tim Needham, Executive Director Healthcare Solutions: HIT infrastructure is always a big theme at HIMSS. I'm looking forward to HIMSS coverage on how healthcare organizations are breaking down long-established silos between clinical engineering and IT departments.

Today, medical devices and biomedical/clinical engineering departments are quite dependent on a health system's IT expertise. In our conversations with healthcare executives, many of them are beginning to consider strategies for leveraging IT convergence to create more visibility into outcome improvement. Migration of medical and IT devices to a single network infrastructure empowers both departments and utilizes their unique skillsets to improve clinical and financial outcomes.

Melissa Serna, MSN, RN-BC, Director, Clinical Informatics: Connected Health will likely be a prominent theme at HIMSS. With the explosion of devices and digital platforms at our fingertips today, it's not hard to envision the wealth of opportunities that mobile health tools and applications can provide to improve patient engagement, strengthen patient-caregiver relationships, and enhance continuity of care beyond the four walls of the hospital.

The challenge for healthcare organizations and vendors is how to support mobile HIT infrastructure to ensure that patients, as well as families and clinical staff, can sustain adoption in the long term. Security strategies to safeguard patient data and ensure compliance are also top of mind when it comes to telehealth directives for 2017. Citrix, which is building workspace mobility solutions for hospitals, will be discussing ways to enhance security, clinical productivity, and mobility, at its HIMSS Citrix Ready Partner Pavilion booth.

Corey Gaarde, FHIMSS, Director, Healthcare Design and Transformation: IT is an integral part of patient care delivery, and no doubt how and when it is implemented makes all the difference. With healthcare organizations continuing to build new facilities at a rapid pace, it's more important than ever for IT to be a key component during the implementation and activation phases of new building projects. IT should be viewed as a foundational element for new facilities, for instance, as it relates to how patients, families and clinicians communicate. We'll see HIMSS discussions on questions such as: How are healthcare organizations, vendors, and partners adapting to new consumer models and building for the future? How does that apply to the design of healthcare both physically and conceptually? IT plays a significant role in shaping the hospital of the future and HIMSS is sure to address the innovations that will lead us there.

Burwood's Healthcare Team is thrilled to participate in the important dialogue surrounding healthcare and IT at HIMSS this year and we look forward to seeing you there. Join us in our reserved meeting space #MP42 and ask about our exclusive cocktail reception Tuesday, February 21, 2017. Please reach out to me at tneedham@burwood.com with HIMSS meeting requests or other inquiries.


February 14, 2017